Podiatry plays an essential role in limb salvaging. Podiatry can help detect medical conditions ahead of time because the preservation of the body is of the utmost importance when it comes to the care of our patients. Our team of highly skilled podiatrists and surgeons specialize in reconstructive surgery methods, and we deploy numerous treatments to help preserve limbs, cure infections and heal the body with preventative measures.
What Conditions Cause Limb Degeneration?
To understand our procedures for salvaging and preservation, understanding the conditions behind the symptoms will help you and our doctors properly diagnose and progress with further treatment. One of the most common diabetic conditions that affect the limbs comes from diabetic feet. Diabetic feet causes poor circulation and numbness in the feet due to the lack of response to the hormone insulin. The abnormal metabolism from diabetes can cause problems with digesting carbohydrates and glucose normally, and these changes in hormones can result in blood and nerve problems as people age. As the most reoccurring cause for amputations, diabetic feet can lead to a multitude of sub-conditions that cause severe problems with the limbs, ankles, and feet, including:
- Peripheral Artery Disease: Peripheral artery disease is the direct cause of diabetic feet, which causes the blood vessels to narrow and reduce blood flow to the body. The narrowing of the peripheral arteries creates a lack of blood flow to the legs, stomach, arms, and head. For those with diabetes, PAD most commonly affects the legs.
- Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy: This condition affects the nerves throughout the body that reach out to the limbs. Diabetic peripheral neuropathy causes nerve damage, forming symptoms of numbness, tingling, burning, and a total loss of feeling.
- Diabetic Foot Ulcers: Foot ulcers result from the combined effects of PAD and DPN, and are defined as breaks in the skin that do not heal. Normal wounds would heal from within seven to 10 days, but with diabetes, those wounds won’t heal and will become more exposed to infections overtime.
- Charcot Foot: Also called Charcot Neuroarthropathy, Charcot foot involves the complete collapse of the bones in the foot due to neuropathy. The bones become soft and cause the foot’s shape to change, making it difficult to walk and cause the skin to breakdown.
Treatment Options For Limb Salvaging
Before severe diabetes complications develop, Dr. Steber and his staff members focus on preventative methods before resulting in amputation as the last step. We make up a multi-disciplinary medical team that will work with you to avoid amputation, and we will schedule regular appointments, create diet and exercise plans, and implement new surgical techniques to keep small problems from getting worse. For surgical treatments, we’ll focus on preserving the limb as much as possible, including procedures such as:
- Removing damaged tissues
- Draining infections
- Reconstructing the muscles, tendons, and bones
- Repair the limbs when injured
In cases of severe infections, such as gangrene, we will perform amputations and work with prosthetic and orthotic specialists throughout the recovery process to keep you safe.
Schedule an Appointment Today!
If you have any concerns regarding our limb salvaging treatments and preventative methods, then contact Dr. Steber at 570-657-6851 to schedule an appointment with our office.